Stay Home

fairy lights

Stay at home?

Tim Weger, Managing Director, Engine Group

We’re hearing conflicting messages.

Do this and don’t do this.

There are those people following each restriction, rule and guideline with laser-like precision.

There are those completely flaunting the rules.

And then there are those somewhere in the middle.

Fear in the community about COVID-19 is escalating and the message being heard all over is STAY AT HOME.

Everyone seems to have their own definition of what constitutes essential. The banter online about what’s important and what’s not is fascinating.

Elections, boating, going to the beach, grocery shopping, working, permitting the Easter bunny to visit.

Confinement is really starting to get to people and NSW has indicated that this is our new normal for the next 90 days. But no one really knows, yet.

As restrictions increase seemingly so too does our ability to judge others.

How dare a nurse take his two boys down to the park to play some footy when after all he should be setting the example for the rest of us.

And surely having a fish is considered a luxury even for the person who uses this activity as a key coping strategy to manage their mental health.

Stay in your lane

Every single person’s situation is unique. And I believe it’s unhelpful to look though a singular lens and judge others and their actions.

We simply have no idea what’s going on in any one individual’s life.

For some physically going to work is an outlet.

Perhaps partaking in some retail therapy helps to refill the cup.

Everything is relative.

Today, I watched my good neighbour renovate his front garden, from the comfort of my front garden as my family enjoyed a picnic lunch in the sun together with some street bike riding and scootering.

A job he says was well overdue.

After cutting down a stack of shrubs, he made 4 trips to the dump, a trip to the nursery for some lovely new plants and received a delivery of soil and mulch.

Was any of this activity necessary? Or dare I say, essential?

Did it positively engage his family of 6?

Did his kids enjoy the togetherness?

Did he feel a sense of accomplishment?

Did he soak up some Vitamin D?

Did his hard earned dollars stimulate the economy whilst supporting the local small businesses currently on their knees?

These are the kind of acts that right now are being judged on social media and in living rooms.

What about the fact that this same neighbour has chosen to work from home because he is in a position to do so.

To socially distance.

To practise good hygiene.

Does he deserve to be persecuted by the keyboard warriors for beautifying his front garden whilst escaping the ugliness of the media headlines?

Finding happiness at home

Yesterday after turning the house upside down looking for a double adaptor, I decided to pop down to the shops to pick one up.

I’m sure many would consider this non-essential and something to be frowned upon despite the fact that I practised social distancing and good hygiene, didn’t touch any other products in the store, sanitised my hands in the car and washed my hands when I got home.

What I can say is that that one small purchase brought great joy to my family of 7 last night. Because it allowed us to turn on the new fairy lights that we had installed in our patio area earlier that day and enjoy a beautiful home cooked BBQ dinner together under the stars (and the fairy lights).

It’s these small things that are going to keep my family happy and healthy over the next 3 months and they are going to be different for all of us.

Perhaps it’s time for every single one of us to consider our individual impact, to be conscious in our behaviours, within the context of current government restrictions, to collectively help stop the spread.

For those folk mentioned above that are somewhere in the middle and respond well to empowerment (I’d say the vast majority), the message I’d love to see them receiving right now is that every less trip away from your home is doing you and your community good. Let’s make each trip count.

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